Vol. 32, No. 11
University of Alaska Fairbanks M.A. student Lale Gurer defended her thesis, Value Adding to Alaska Chum and Pink Salmon Fillets, last month in Kodiak. Seafood marketing specialist Quentin Fong is Gurer's advisor, and Alaska Sea Grant has provided tuition funding for her.
Gurer investigated market potential for loins derived from Pacific pink and chum salmon fillets. She reviewed the Alaska pink and chum salmon fishery and markets, and surveyed seafood professionals for their salmon loin preferences—texture, meat color, frozen or not, weight, and skin on or off. Gurer also asked survey participants to identify profit margins of pink and chum salmon loins compared to skinless boneless salmon fillets. Her research shows that pink and chum salmon loins are not currently a profitable option in the marketplace.
Alaska Sea Grant will cohost the annual Holiday Open House and Gift Sale on Thursday, December 6, 2–6 pm. Alaska Sea Grant, University of Alaska Press, and UAF Marketing and Communications welcome all from the Fairbanks community and the university. Please come to the 2nd floor at 794 University Avenue in Fairbanks to greet friends and colleagues, and shop for holiday gift books. Refreshments, author signing, and door prizes will be offered.
The 39th annual meeting of the Alaska Chapter of the American Fisheries Society was held in Kodiak, October 22–26. More than 120 talks and 20 posters were presented on the theme Ecosystem, Fishery and Food Sustainability in a Changing World.
Alaska Sea Grant Marine Advisory faculty presented several talks at the symposium. Reid Brewer gave a talk on North Pacific giant octopus, Julie Matweyou gave a presentation on PSP, and Sunny Rice presented early results for the Southern Southeast Alaska Sea Otter Project. In addition, Gary Freitag gave a talk on sampling for marine nonindigenous species, Bree Witteveen presented on acoustics in whale research, and Brian Himelbloom spoke on refined liquid smoke.
Ray RaLonde gave two talks—on PSP and shellfish aquaculture, and Chuck Crapo made a presentation on the Food Safety Modernization Act. Alex Oliveira talked about producing cod liver oil and gave demonstrations at the UAF Kodiak Seafood and Marine Science Center pilot plant, and Quentin Fong organized a reception and led a tour at the Kodiak Center. About 200 people registered for the meeting.
The Alaska Environmental Literacy Plan (AKELP) Working Group was among 17 organizations recognized for a 2012 Partners in Conservation Award, by the U.S. Interior Department. Marilyn Sigman, Alaska Sea Grant marine education specialist, serves on the AKELP Working Group and was among the award winners.
Sigman helped develop the Environmental Literacy Plan, which will be submitted to the Alaska Board of Education and Early Development for approval. The plan provides guidance to connect Alaska's youth with the natural world and the communities they live in by promoting outdoor learning and physical activity. When implemented, the actions outlined in the plan will support the integration of outdoor learning into schools, encourage support of community partners, and ensure that all students graduate as environmentally literate citizens.
The 108-page draft plan is available for review until November 30, 2012. Anyone can review the plan online, provide comments, and sign on as a supporter at http://education.alaska.gov/tls/akelp/.
Santa Monica Seafood, the largest distributor of seafood in the American Southwest, donated $10,000 to support the Alaska King Crab Research, Rehabilitation and Biology program. This is the third year the company has donated to AKCRRAB, for a total of $30,000, through their Responsible Sourcing Vendor Partner (RSVP) Program.
“We're excited to continue to be a part of their research efforts and we look forward to a bright future for Alaska red and blue king crab and the people who depend on this important marine resource,” said Logan Kock, vice president of strategic purchasing and responsible sourcing for Santa Monica Seafood.
AKCRRAB is a partnership with Alaska Sea Grant, Aleutian Pribilof Island Community Development Association, Central Bering Sea Fishermen’s Association, United Fishermen’s Marketing Association, NOAA Fisheries, Alutiiq Pride Shellfish Hatchery, Chugach Regional Resources Commission, and UAF School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences.
Alaska Sea Grant recently published the Alaska Oyster Growers Manual, 4th edition. Most of the 34 chapters in the PDF-only book were written by Marine Advisory aquaculture specialist Ray RaLonde, Alaskan Shellfish Growers Association president Rodger Painter, and former Marine Advisory business specialist Glenn Haight. The how-to manual is for both new and experienced shellfish farmers. It covers oyster biology, recommended culture techniques, business planning, and guidance for permits and leases. Farmers also can learn about best management practices for cooperatives, site selection, designing site structures, shellfish health, processing and marketing, and shipping.
Much of the information in the publication is based on surveys of active growers in Alaska, particularly about successful husbandry methods. Funding for developing the book was provided by a Rural Business Enterprise Grant from the USDA Rural Development Alaska office. Copies are available at http://seagrant.uaf.edu/bookstore/pubs/AN-19.html.
Ray RaLonde, Alaska Sea Grant aquaculture specialist, has coauthored a new article that presents the state of knowledge of harmful algal blooms along the west coast of North America:
A.J. Lewitus, R.A. Horner, D.A. Caron, E. Garcia-Mendoza, B.M. Hickey, M. Hunter, D.D. Huppert, R.M. Kudela, G.W. Langlois, J.L. Largier, E.J. Lessard, R. RaLonde, J.E.J. Rensel, P.G. Strutton, V.L. Trainer, and J.F. Tweddle. 2012. Harmful algal blooms along the North American west coast region: History, trends, causes, and impacts. Harmful Algae 19:133-159.
Harmful algal blooms, a global threat to living marine resources and human health, have increased markedly in frequency and geographical distribution over the last 10-15 years. The article was published to help meet the need for integration of HAB outreach, research, and management efforts. Topics include paralytic shellfish poisoning; Pseudo-nitzschia spp. and domoic acid poisoning; Heterosigma, Chattonella, and fish kills; and HABs and economics.
Ketchikan Marine Advisory agent Gary Freitag presented a program onboard an Allen Marine tour vessel in September, to raise funds for the Carroll Fader Maritime Scholarship fund. Freitag and Barb Morgan, OceansAlaska research and education coordinator, narrated live underwater views from cameras on a remotely operated vehicle. The audience saw marine life at below 250 feet depth on three large TV screens. Many of the visitors told Freitag they enjoyed the descriptions and views of shrimp, ratfish, anemones, and sea stars. About 100 people attended the demonstration event, from Ketchikan and beyond. Organizers raised over $8000 for the University of Alaska Southeast scholarship.
The scholarship honors Carroll Fader, who was a maritime industry educator in Ketchikan and served in the Alaska House of Representatives. Fader helped develop the maritime/marine education program at Ketchikan High School and the UAS Ketchikan Campus. He also secured funding to buy the RV Jack Cotant, which continues to provide hands-on training to high school and university students. Many of Fader's students went on to careers with the U.S. Navy, Alaska Marine Highway, and the Alaska Sea Pilot's Association, and are employed as airline captains, air taxi operators, and local business owners.